Help! I Accidentally Liked An Old Instagram Post!
When Insta-stalking goes wrong, very wrong, it can be mortifying.
Look we've all been there -- innocently scrolling through someone's Instagram feed late at night, enjoying their photos, when suddenly without warning you've liked a photo. And not just liked it, you "liked" it.
Oh. The shame. And oh, the panic, right?
Like these stories from ten daily folks who shall remain nameless.
"I was just insanely bored and on my phone and came across a mate (but not a close mate) who has cool pics so I just started scrolling and liked something from like... four months earlier. I swear my stomach dropped out. I basically just liked a few more pics, sent her a stupidly awkward message, and we never talked about it again. I still see her sometimes."
"I didn't even like the guy that much! He was one of my first hook-ups and we saw each other a few times and I just found myself scrolling his Insta to see what he'd been up to in the past... oh I don't know, 2 YEARS and accidentally double tapped when I tried to get out of the pic..."
"I was super into this guy once and he followed me on Instagram so I started going through his photos and saw this girl kept appearing in them so I went on to her profile to see if she was his girlfriend, ended up scrolling down to posts from like 3 years ago, and all of a sudden realised my thumb was positioned to scroll over the like button. I only saw one that I had definitely liked I don't know how extensive the damage was but in an absolute panic I hurled my phone across the room (I don't know why that was my first instinct) it ended up falling out of its case and got a tiny scratch. but I didn't touch Instagram again for weeks!"
And this one:
"This didn't happen to me but to a friend of mine and I haven't stopped thinking about it since she told me. She found her friend's new girlfriend online (I'm talking new-new, like a couple of weeks in) and was scrolling through her profile. A few minutes later she got a message from one of her other friends asking her why she shared a random girl's profile picture to her wall... SEVEN times."
Yes, all it takes is one tiny slip and BAM. You’ve liked the picture and revealed yourself as a massive creep.
And it’s just as easy to do on Facebook as it is on Instagram and universally mortifying regardless of which platform. Even if you immediately unlike it, they’re still getting a notification, right?
There’s really not an awful lot you can do. An expert at UK's Modern Etiquette site suggests, "Firstly, put your phone on airplane mode -- there are no guarantees, but there’s a tiny chance that if you kill the signal fast enough, it won’t go through."
Tip: You can also do this BEFORE you start obsessively looking at people's photos. Load up a few pages’ worth of tweets or images, then turn on airplane mode, meaning you are disconnected from the internet and at no risk of leaving a trace.
Also, there is a chance that if you "Unlike" it before they open Instagram, they won't see any notification in the app, as long as they don't have their notifications switched on for their home screen.
But you won't know for sure. Which will stress you out.
Of course, if it's too late to do any of this at all, you’re going to have to be a mature grown up about it.
If this is someone you know well, you might as well just admit what you were doing and laugh about it. After all, we all do it. Even if you don’t know them that well, your best bet is probably to send a message saying sorry.
An ex? Same applies. "Sorry, was just checking out your feed. Got a bit carried away!"
And if it's a crush, The Guardian's Elle Hunt suggests you simply ask them out.
"You’ve already exposed your interest in photos from their first year of university -- even rejection can’t be worse. And if they say yes, well, problem solved."
If not, Scotland looks nice...
Feature Image: Getty.